Lock Meta tank: complete info consolidation

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100 Undead Warlock
12575
It is surprising to not see a Blue Post on this topic, people complained about the loss of Challenging Howl (A warlock's version of the warrior's Challenging Shout.)
at the start of Cataclysm, a lot of people used it to help tank adds in demon form, keep adds off heals / dps, and it prevented wipes, currently in Cataclysm (and in Wrath) we have/had more armor than any tank had when we were in Demon Form, and with Demon Armor we got the increased heals that other classes had as well, we only lacked an actual taunt, and cooldowns.

Well, now we have the ability to get that taunt and those cooldowns, we still have a ton of armor (400% down from 600%, but still enough).

Enough mitigation for magic and physical damage, a taunt, cooldowns, AoE and Single Target threat.

Blizz, the player-base is begging for this change.
90 Blood Elf Warlock
10600
04/15/2012 10:13 PMPosted by Grammond
It is surprising to not see a Blue Post on this topic


Seriously. >_>

Actually it's not surprising.
Edited by Baalsamael on 4/15/2012 10:26 PM PDT
90 Blood Elf Warlock
12500
Blue doesn't like to make partial promises or if/then statements. They tend to backfire. From Ghostcrawler's last statement and the fact that development time is continuing to be put into this we can ASSUME that this project is still alive and open to iteration. If they had decided one way or the other, they would have stated something. While it's still in the air, it is just safer for them to stay quiet about it.

With that said, it is worth stating that allowing a warlock tank spec goes against stated philosophy of a previous developer water-cooler (the pure dps argument one) in which it was stated that it is not likely that they would change the roles of classes this late in the game. However, that was stated making the assumption of giving every class every role.

I think the biggest thing keeping this from being official is that Blizzard needs to decide if pures should stay in the game. If pure dps classes stay, then DA becomes an emergency tanking spec. If pure dps classes go away, then the three other pures will need to pick up tanking and/or healing specs, which will require even more development time. This is not merely an issue of warlocks tanking. It is an issue of making another major change to which classes can perform which combat roles (The first being at the end of BC, when they allowed all tanks to have roughly equal capabilities and nixed the concept of support dps). Something that they didn't go into this expansion expecting to do.
Edited by Orloth on 4/15/2012 11:00 PM PDT
5 Human Warlock
0
Hey Nymph, you're someone's hero.

http://www.mmo-champion.com/threads/1116433-A-Warlock-tanking-the-forums-for-Warlock-tanking!


Oh wow haha... Thanks for the link, it's heartwarming !

I need to update my two theorycraft threads. Maybe later today, or maybe in the next days.

I'm quoting this again for one reason. Demo does not currently fit the MoP tanking model. GC is preaching about active mitigation and I believe this is the best route to achieve such a goal.


Actually, Fury Ward does a better job to mitigate actively than most other similar spells from other class.

I'm not really fond of the "more fury = more mitigation", as it goes against that idea of active mitigation. You just build up fury, and you try to do nothing, because doing nothing is the best idea to keep fury. In my opinion, that's the exact opposite.

DF could add more DPS, or more demonic fury, or the two. For example, increasing the chance of spamming Imps from Wild Imps.
=> It would allow Warlock tank to help with the global DPS when they think it is safe to do so.
=> It would be better for them to keep high level of Fury, so they generate Fury faster when they have to use some. This way, if they need a burst of mitigation, they can burn all their Fury quickly, but they will have a hard time building it up again.
=> In the end that would force them to keep fury as much as they can, and not spend it recklessly. (= be thoughtful in your fury use)

In any case, the Fury = mitigation would be gimmicky : spending mitigation to gain mitigation is kind of awkward.
90 Blood Elf Warlock
10600
Oh wow haha... Thanks for the link, it's heartwarming !

I need to update my two theorycraft threads. Maybe later today, or maybe in the next days.
I expect there to be some major changes this week with a beta patch, just a gut feeling. Do it then IMO. No use updating for things to change in a single day.
85 Human Warlock
2590

I think the biggest thing keeping this from being official is that Blizzard needs to decide if pures should stay in the game. If pure dps classes stay, then DA becomes an emergency tanking spec. If pure dps classes go away, then the three other pures will need to pick up tanking and/or healing specs, which will require even more development time. This is not merely an issue of warlocks tanking. It is an issue of making another major change to which classes can perform which combat roles (The first being at the end of BC, when they allowed all tanks to have roughly equal capabilities and nixed the concept of support dps). Something that they didn't go into this expansion expecting to do.


While I agree with the first part of your post and the assumption the silence is because of experimentation, this part I disagree. While the community might go, "they(warlocks) get multiple roles why can't we?" I doubt it is a major issue, locks have always been the 'tankiest' and of the pures, back since vanilla. They were partially design that way from the get go. No other pure dps class has at any point had an ability to intentionally boost threat out side of direct dps except for hunters, but their ability was created specifically to draw mobs onto their traps for CC purposes. I don't believe in the contention that there is a debate about whether or not allowing us to tank will mean considerations toward allowing the other pures multiple roles.
100 Human Warlock
10020
The 'charge crap' on demonic slash and gul'dan's abilities deliberately paces demonic fury generation in the same way that rage, holy power, and runes are deliberately paced. This allows active mitigation from fury ward to be carefully calibrated.

No, I think their current system works fine. Fury is Generated through Demonic Slash, Hand of Gul'dan, our auto and pet's attacks; and spent on either Fury Ward, burst threat or utility. It just needs to be properly balanced to be on par with the other tanks and have some avoidance.


I was a little annoyed by the charge mechanic for Slash at first, but after lots of practice on the 700k-hp Firelands daily mobs, and the firsthand experience of tanking Temple of the Jade Serpent once ( albeit with several client-side crashes throughout ), I'm warming up to the charge requirement on Demonic Slash.

It does feel a little restrictive at first, especially if you come from Demo DPS where you can just spam it until your Fury runs out, but it's by no means our only Fury generator. Corruption can be multi-dotted, and ideally we'd use Breath of Gul'dan in melee range to get Shadowflame ticking on multiple targets as well ( but BoG costs 1000 Fury in the current build, so it's impossible to do so right now ). Couple that with our pet and Wild Imps also generating Fury, and we'll have just enough to both keep threat and use Fury Ward when we need to - but one is always at the expense of the other.

It's a fairly delicate balance at this point, and there's nothing wrong with that. You have to choose between threat generation or damage mitigation. When the outcome of that choice is immediately evident, the choice itself feels meaningful, which in turn makes the gameplay more rewarding.
85 Human Warlock
2590
I haven't been able to get much info on the demonic slash charge aspect. From what I know it caps at three consecutive hits the prevents additional fury gain. Can I get someone to give an in depth description of how it works please.
100 Human Warlock
10020
04/17/2012 02:05 AMPosted by Tedodor
I haven't been able to get much info on the demonic slash charge aspect. From what I know it caps at three consecutive hits the prevents additional fury gain. Can I get someone to give an in depth description of how it works please.


Slash has a 4-second cooldown. You cast it, and 4 seconds pass before you can cast it again. With most spells, if you don't use them when the cooldown resets, you're wasting precious time/damage/threat/etc. But with Slash, the first time the cooldown resets, the timer keeps ticking. After 4 more seconds pass without casting it, you gain an additional charge. You can now effectively cast Slash twice without invoking a cooldown.

Charges accumulate in this manner up to 3. So if 12 seconds pass without the warlock casting Slash, he or she will be able to cast Slash 3 times before it goes on cooldown again.

The nice thing is that charges keep charging up as long as you have less than three, so you can "hold on" to charges of Slash in case you need to spend them all in quick succession for whatever reason. If you start with three and spam them all, by the time you get through the GCDs, another will have accumulated - so you can actually cast Slash 4 times before running into the cooldown.

Once you do hit the cooldown, you can either use it 'as normal' ( every 4 seconds ) or you can wait 8 or 12 seconds for backup reserves. From what preliminary testing I was able to do between crashes, it's not hard to get back up to two or three charges between casting all our other tanking abilities.

Charges are really a quality-of-life thing for our threat generator. Instead of it having a fixed, 4-second cooldown, Slash can stack its cooldowns up to 3, so we have more "burst threat" available for when we need it. I haven't tested paladins yet but I imagine Crusader Strike works similarly for Protection.
85 Human Warlock
2590
04/17/2012 07:42 AMPosted by Derrek
I haven't been able to get much info on the demonic slash charge aspect. From what I know it caps at three consecutive hits the prevents additional fury gain. Can I get someone to give an in depth description of how it works please.


Slash has a 4-second cooldown. You cast it, and 4 seconds pass before you can cast it again. With most spells, if you don't use them when the cooldown resets, you're wasting precious time/damage/threat/etc. But with Slash, the first time the cooldown resets, the timer keeps ticking. After 4 more seconds pass without casting it, you gain an additional charge. You can now effectively cast Slash twice without invoking a cooldown.

Charges accumulate in this manner up to 3. So if 12 seconds pass without the warlock casting Slash, he or she will be able to cast Slash 3 times before it goes on cooldown again.

The nice thing is that charges keep charging up as long as you have less than three, so you can "hold on" to charges of Slash in case you need to spend them all in quick succession for whatever reason. If you start with three and spam them all, by the time you get through the GCDs, another will have accumulated - so you can actually cast Slash 4 times before running into the cooldown.

Once you do hit the cooldown, you can either use it 'as normal' ( every 4 seconds ) or you can wait 8 or 12 seconds for backup reserves. From what preliminary testing I was able to do between crashes, it's not hard to get back up to two or three charges between casting all our other tanking abilities.

Charges are really a quality-of-life thing for our threat generator. Instead of it having a fixed, 4-second cooldown, Slash can stack its cooldowns up to 3, so we have more "burst threat" available for when we need it. I haven't tested paladins yet but I imagine Crusader Strike works similarly for Protection.


TY for the info, its much different then I had originally heard.
90 Orc Hunter
11230
in favor +1
90 Human Warlock
10145
One can hope that their silence plus the continued work being put into DA means they are evaluating it first before making any more statements.

Regarding BoG, it turns into Carrion Swarm at 86 while in demon form, so I think its 1000 fury cost is a bug or aberration. as for CS, though I think the idea of getting an iconic WC3 hero ability is cool, it does some a little out of place with the whole shadowflame / twilight energy theme demo currently has going for it.

Touch of Chaos needs to be made 40 yard range for Meta, and either needs to scale with weapon speed for DA or retain its ~1 sec swing time regardless of what weapon we have equipped.
100 Tauren Druid
15530
The 'charge crap' on demonic slash and gul'dan's abilities deliberately paces demonic fury generation in the same way that rage, holy power, and runes are deliberately paced. This allows active mitigation from fury ward to be carefully calibrated.

No, I think their current system works fine. Fury is Generated through Demonic Slash, Hand of Gul'dan, our auto and pet's attacks; and spent on either Fury Ward, burst threat or utility. It just needs to be properly balanced to be on par with the other tanks and have some avoidance.

Napkin math suggests that we can get about 50% normal avoidance levels through reforging crit and haste to dodge rating (and snooping around other guides tells me that that is where a lot of bear avoidance comes from to begin with). This makes dedicated tanking gear different enough from dps gear in that they are reforged differently (again, same as bear and cats). I would like some confirmation on this though, as I am not familiar with bear tanking mechanics, but if it is true we have a workable model.


We get half our dodge from Agi, half from Talents, and about 7% from reforging
85 Goblin Warlock
6195
+1 In favor (totally not biased >.>)
90 Blood Elf Warlock
12500
04/17/2012 04:39 PMPosted by Okakeri
We get half our dodge from Agi, half from Talents, and about 7% from reforging


Thank you for that. Much appreciated.
95 Undead Warlock
8745
Thing to keep in mind of course is that It'll take practically till Max level before Warlocks have all the tools they need for Tanking, while actual Tank Classes get most of their tools at low level.

It's pretty much that which would keep us from being a true tank, but I think in Guild Runs Lock Tanking could work out pretty well.

We just won't get to use it in Randoms and LFR.

and speaking as someone who has Warrior Tanked Randoms, Locks wouldn't want to tank for those people anyway.
85 Human Warlock
2590
04/18/2012 12:36 AMPosted by Drakmor
Locks wouldn't want to tank for those people anyway.
Well, they are beneath us.

I've tanked on all 3 plate tanks and I would like to add that I personally feel that the very concept of a lock tank is a breath of fresh air. I've seen vids of it in action and I did it myself back in the day a couple times. I always loved this lock but I hated the super complex rotations in cata. I really wish haunt didn't cost a shard but if soul burned would refresh dot durations. Also I haven't been able to determine if MG tics 1/2 the dot duration is intentional or a bug.
Edited by Tedodor on 4/18/2012 9:24 AM PDT
100 Human Warlock
10020
04/18/2012 12:36 AMPosted by Drakmor
Thing to keep in mind of course is that It'll take practically till Max level before Warlocks have all the tools they need for Tanking, while actual Tank Classes get most of their tools at low level.


The basic stuff, yes. Taunt, area effect threat generator, single-target threat generator, and basic mitigation utility. I haven't leveled a tank in beta yet, but in Cataclysm my warrior didn't feel like he could really do his job until I got Shockwave at level 69.

We don't get Nether Plating till 27, but by then we'll have Demonic Slash, Hellfire, and Aura of Enfeeblement. Soulshatter will need to be reduced in level if we're to have a low-level taunt ( honestly, taunts aren't used much at low levels anyway ).

It's pretty much that which would keep us from being a true tank, but I think in Guild Runs Lock Tanking could work out pretty well.

We just won't get to use it in Randoms and LFR.


"Can't currently" and "won't get to" are two entirely different things.
Edited by Derrek on 4/18/2012 10:50 AM PDT
90 Human Priest
7480
Thing to keep in mind of course is that It'll take practically till Max level before Warlocks have all the tools they need for Tanking, while actual Tank Classes get most of their tools at low level.

It's pretty much that which would keep us from being a true tank, but I think in Guild Runs Lock Tanking could work out pretty well.

We just won't get to use it in Randoms and LFR.

and speaking as someone who has Warrior Tanked Randoms, Locks wouldn't want to tank for those people anyway.


But you also have to keep in mind that you don't need a tank until like level 70 and it depends *entirely* on your healer. When I level a healer I pull 90% of the time because the tank isn't going fast enough and I know totally what I can heal through. The lack of certain abilities on a lock is a moot point at low levels, right now.

Sure, there will be the new players who are Affliction spec and decide to queue as tank, but it's no worse than getting a Frost DK or a Ret Pally tanking and I *still* get those idiots to heal at max level.


I know I'm a Priest, but I found out about these talents a few weeks ago and wanted to make sure things were still going in a good direction before I start working on my Warlock for MoP. I'm beyond thrilled to try out a new tank class and I hope I get into the beta to test it out. Demo Tanks feel like what I miss about Bears in WotLK. I am beyond thrilled to see this being considered, and want to personally tank all of the developers for even giving this a chance, I know you can work it out to be doable. :)
Edited by Catsphiroth on 4/18/2012 12:11 PM PDT
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